Half of Spanish households go to bars or restaurants at least once a week

Housing and food are the biggest items of expenditure

by Lorraine Williamson
Spanish households eating out

Spanish households increased their spending in 2023 and they did so especially in the hospitality sector. Housing remains the largest item of expenditure. In total, an average of €32,617 was spent per household in Spain last year.

This amounts to €13,120 per person. Spending increased in most categories, except for communication and alcoholic beverages and tobacco. Expenditure on this decreased by 3% and 1.2% respectively.

In restaurants and hotels, Spaniards spent €3,311 last year, €386 more than the year before, according to the household budget survey published by the Spanish statistical office, INE. Of every ten euros spent in 2023, one euro went to the hospitality industry. The second fastest-growing item is apparel and footwear, with an increase of 8.1%. That amounts to almost €100 more than in 2022.


Although spending on hotels and restaurants increased the most, this is the item on which Spaniards spent the most money. On average, households spent 31% of their budget on housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels, a total of €10,367 per year. That is 1.5% more than last year.

After housing, food is the largest item of expenditure, accounting for 16% of the household budget, €5,333 per year (5% more, an increase of €285). Meat consumption accounted for 3.6% of total expenditure, bread and cereals 2.2%, milk, cheese and eggs 2.1%, legumes, vegetables and potatoes 1.8%, fish 1.8% and fruit accounted for 1.6% of total expenditure.

The percentages vary depending on the family budget. According to INE, the households with the lowest budgets spent 63.5% of their budget on their housing and related expenses (water, electricity, gas and other fuels). Households with the highest budgets spent more than a third of their budget (34.7%) on transport, restaurants and hotels, and leisure and culture.

Regions where people spend the most

The autonomous communities with the highest average expenditure per person in 2023 are the Basque Country (€15,570), the Balearic Islands (€14,769) and the Community of Madrid (€14,650). Extremadura (€11,103 euros), the Canary Islands (€11,373) and the region of Murcia (€11,620) have the lowest average expenditure per person. This means that the average expenditure per person in the Basque Country was 18.7% higher than the national average, and that in Extremadura was 15.4% lower than the national average.

Spending in restaurants will continue to increase in 2024 As the Spanish newspaper ABC recently reported, 50% of Spaniards go to a bar or restaurant at least once a week. That is 28% more than the previous year, despite the clear loss of purchasing power due to inflation. The main reason for eating out remains “socialising and spending time with friends and family.”

Also read: Spain shines in the Worlds 50 Best Restaurants 2024

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